Estonia Victory Day on June 23 is a public holiday and a day of great celebration when all businesses and schools shut down for the occasion. But why is the day worth celebrating? Well, because history is complicated and things weren’t as peaceful amongst all countries as they are today. In fact, many young individuals were sent off to war in order to protect the region. And yes, this resulted in the loss of many lives. It is to honor those lives that the Estonia Victory Day is celebrated every year.
History of Estonia Victory Day
The time of turmoil started in Estonia at the end of World War I when the country started a
War of Independence. The conflict was against Soviet-Russian troops and the Baltic-German Landeswehr Army. Unfortunately, by the end of 1918, the Soviet-Russian forces had already occupied half of Estonia. This was a short-lived triumph though as it wasn’t long before Finnish volunteers as well as British naval assistance showed up to defend Estonia. Together, they stopped the advancement of the Soviet forces. This included a multinational force of 85,500 Estonians, 3,700 Finns, over 5,000 Russians of the North West White Army, 9,800 Latvians, 3,000 British, 400 Swedes, 250 Danes, and up to 700 Baltic Germans.
Fighting was still persistent in certain regions until 1919, but the rest of Estonia was secured. And then there was the final battle on June 23, 1919, which saw the collapse of the Von Der Goltz Landeswehr Army. The Estonia Victory Day, however, was not celebrated until 1934. From thereon, the day has been commemorated and celebrated to remember the Estonian War of Independence and to remember the struggle Estonia went through to regain and retain its independence.
Every year, Estonia Victory Day is followed by Midsummer Day and is commemorated with the annual military parade. There are also great celebrations across the country and some time off is given to students and workers to take a look back at the efforts of the past.
Estonia Victory Day timeline
Finnish volunteers and British naval assistance arrive in Estonia to support the
General von der Goltz advances and isolates the right-wing of the Estonian Army.
The Treaty of Tartu establishes peace between Estonia and Soviet Russia.
Those who fought against the Soviets are sentenced to 25-year prison sentences.
Estonia Victory Day FAQs
What is Victory Day in Russia?
Russia observes Victory Day as an important national holiday on May 9.
What do you mean by Victory Day?
The name is used in different countries to honor important battles won in the past.
Why do the Maldives celebrate Victory Day?
The public holiday marks the defeat of an attempted coup against then-president Maumoon Abdul Gayoom.
Estonia Victory Day Activities
Join a parade
On the day, numerous parades are held across the country. All you have to do is join the one you think has the best entertainment quotient. It is also the best way to meet new people.
Write a play
To make sure the young know about the Estonian battles, write a play and select some actors. This would help the youth understand the history and will also be a tribute.
To relive the past, watch a documentary that gives an analysis of Estonian history. It is a great way to learn about all the efforts that were made to achieve peace and independence.
5 Interesting Facts About Estonia
Largest collection of folk songs
Estonia has over 133,000 folk songs.
Number of islands
There are over 2,000 islands in Estonia.
Free public transport
Public transport is entirely free for those residing in the Estonian capital, Tallinn.
Estonia has two Unesco World Heritage sites.
Highest adult literacy rate in the world
The adult literacy rate stands at 99.8%.
Why We Love Estonia Victory Day
It is historical
We love the day because it is flooded with history and narrates all the wars and victories that took place in Estonia’s past. It also talks about all the other nations that helped Estonia during tough times.
It teaches people to be grateful
Seeing the history and realizing all the effort that was put in to create the country, often leads to feelings of gratitude. This can help people treat their fellow countrymen better.
It encourages patriotism
A blast from the past also leads to feelings of patriotism and unity as people begin to realize how special their country is. They also learn that suffering would have been in the cards, had they not gained independence.
Estonia Victory Day dates